If you have properly activated Windows 10 online - then the activation will remain valid through OS reinstalls
If you have properly activated Windows 8 online - then that activation will remain valid through OS reinstalls
How are you planning to reinstall Windows?
If from a recovery partition on the computer, it may go to Windows 8
If from the W10 Reset function - it will likely go to W10
You can be sure that it goes to W10 by using the Media Creation Tool from here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10
This will install a clean copy of Windows 10 from Microsoft. If your system has other programs on it, you'll have to reinstall them individually.
More on a clean install (and it's use as a troubleshooting tool):
A clean install is:
- Windows is installed to a freshly partitioned hard drive with legitimate installation media (W10: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows10 ).
- The installation media is only a copy of Windows, not the OEM recovery disks that you can make on some systems.
- Windows is fully updated after it's installed. That's ALL updates - none excepted.
- NO 3rd party software is installed.
- There are no errors in Device Manager (if you find any, post back for suggestions).
This will wipe everything off of the computer, so it's advisable to backup your stuff first.
Also, it will wipe out all the special software that the OEM added to the system, so if you rely on any of that - let us know what it is so we can figure out a way to save/download it (the easiest way is to create/obtain the OEM;s recovery media)
If unable to find recovery media that has the software (or if you suspect that this is a hardware problem), you can make an image of your system that'll preserve everything in the state that it was in when you made the image.
One drawback to this is that you're making an image of a malfunctioning system - so, if there are errors in the system software, you'll have a nice copy of them
Another drawback is that the image of the system will be very large - so you'll most likely need a large external drive to store it on.
But, this will allow you to save everything on the hard drive (although you'll need an image viewer to get things out of the image).
The point here is that, if it's a hardware problem, then you can restore the system to the point it was when you made the image - after you repair the hardware problem.
You can obtain more info on imaging in the Backup/Imaging/DiskMgmt forums located here: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/f/238/backup-imaging-and-disk-management-software/
The point of doing this (the clean install) is to:
- rule out Windows as a problem (if the problem continues, it's not a Windows problem as you completely replaced Windows
- rule out 3rd party software (if the problem continues, it's not a 3rd party software problem as you didn't install any 3rd party software)
- so, if the problem continues, it must be a hardware problem.
OTOH, if the problem stops, then it was either a Windows or 3rd party software problem. If the problem doesn't come back, then you've fixed it. Then all that remains is setting the computer back up the way that you'd like it and importing your data from the backup you made.
Edited by usasma, 24 September 2017 - 08:06 AM.
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